Shortage of teaching spaces is among the most significant educational problems. Except for a limited number of schools, lack of physical education and recreational facilities is the common feature of all schools. In the girls’ schools and schools that are in low-income regions, particularly in the provinces of Sistan-o-Baluchistan, Hormuzgan, and West Azerbaijan, students are crammed into tight spaces which are way too far from basic educational and hygienic standards.
32,000 schools, that is one-third of the total number of schools across the country, are timeworn and lack immunity, and they must be razed and reconstructed.
The director general of Renovation of Schools in Tehran Province said that 235 schools in Tehran were more than 60 years old, adding, “On the whole, 8,500 classes must be demolished and reconstructed and 14,500 classes need to be reinforced in Tehran Province.” (The state-run ISNA news agency- August 20, 2018)
The Chair of the City Council of Tehran, Ray and Tajrish, Mohsen Hashemi, disclosed that “700 schools in Tehran will be destroyed in case of a severe storm, let alone an earthquake.” (The state-run Khabaronline.com – December 14, 2017)
Criticizing education’s share in the government’s budget bill, a Tehran member of parliament, Farideh Oladghobad has disclosed that 50% of the capital’s schools are dilapidated.
In an interview with parliament’s news website, Oladghobad said in January 2018 that 50% of Tehran schools are in dilapidated buildings and this has dire “financial and life-threatening consequences”.
According to the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps, IRGC-run Tasnim news agency, in Tehran alone some 700 schools are in a state of ruin and are unsafe for students.
Even though these schools are listed as ‘ramshackle schools’ they still admit students annually and no one seems to care unless a disaster strikes, Tasnim insisted.
Earlier, when it was reported that eighty schools were demolished in 2017 November’s 7-3 magnitude earthquake in Kermanshah, western Iran, the Minister of Education, Mohammad Bathaei declared that one third of school buildings across Iran are unsafe.
Substandard school systems and structures and the government’s failure to renovate them have led to numerous accidents.
In December 2018, four girls died after suffering burns when a fire erupted at an elementary school in Zahedan, capital of Sistan and Baluchistan province. It is one of Iran’s most underdeveloped regions.
The incident indicated that the Iranian regime has not resolved safety issues that led to a similar tragedy in 2012.
Mohammad Ali Bathaii, made shocking confessions to reporters at a government meeting on December 12, 2018, saying, “Given the credit the government and the Education Ministry have, it is not possible to remove (the non-standard) heaters from schools in seven or eight
The mullahs’ Minister of Education had previously announced in 2017 that 42 percent of Iranian schools do not have a safe heating system.